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BEHIND THE SCENES / ORANGE COUNTY

Haute Chocolate

September 26, 1996

You like chocolate, mocha and caramel? Of course you do, but we're not talking sweets here. We're talking clothes and the deep browns that are the hot shades for fall.

To show off how fine the color can be, fashion coordinator James Campbell of James Campbell Productions in West Hollywood staged four "chocolate fashion shows" at Los Cerritos Center in Cerritos on Saturday.

Twelve models and dancers strolled the runways in 80 men's and women's outfits culled from stores at the center.

"At first I wasn't sure I could find enough brown merchandise, but as [designer] Cynthia Rowley says, brown is the new black," Campbell said. "There was more than enough to show the trend, play with texture and prints and hit the season's silhouettes."

Campbell's show ran the board, from "look-alike Gucci" to tweeds, velours and velvets. He also courageously matched '70s-inspired polyester prints with elegant suits.

The show satisfied taste as well as sight. Besides the fashions, there was a 500-pound chocolate sculpture of a lion, a chocolate milk fountain and chocolate cooking demonstrations.

Continuing the theme, there were free showings of "Forest Gump." (Hazy on the connection? Think, "Life is like a box of [fill in the blank]."]

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